Celcom has announced its commitment to provide a reliable service and consistent experience for East Malaysia users. It has allocated over RM200 million for network improvements in Sabah and Sarawak this year which include improving 4G LTE capacity, coverage enhancements, core network as well as fibre investments with Celcom Timur Sdn Bhd.
According to the blue telco, data utilisation in Sabah and Sarawak in 2021 has increased by 31% and 34% respectively compared to 2020. As part of the JENDELA initiative, Celcom aims to address the rapid data growth by deploying 1,145 new 4G LTE sites and upgrading 745 existing 2G sites with 4G LTE technology in East Malaysia. It also aims to upgrade network capacity at 874 existing 4G LTE sites for both states, covering major cities and rural areas.
Celcom CEO Datuk Idham Nawawi said, “We are committed to deliver reliable services and consistent experience to our customers on our widest network across the country. Aligned with the Jendela aspiration and in collaboration with the industry, we are putting a lot of emphasis on network improvements for Sabah and Sarawak. With the new rollout, we target to expand and increase our 4G LTE population coverage to 85% for Sabah and 92% for Sarawak by end 2022”.
He added that the network improvements in Sabah and Sarawak will include modernisation of their network services such as deploying the latest end-to-end network technology such as 16T16R multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO), carrier aggregation and 256 Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM).
Celcom was recently crowned the best telco for mobile coverage 2021 by Ookla Speedtest. Last year, they have invested RM825 million for network improvements and claim to have 99% 4G LTE population coverage in 7 states. Last year, Celcom announced an upgrade of 100 4G sites in Sabah and Sarawak using the 900MHz spectrum. The lower band for 4G offers better in-building penetration which allows a more robust transmission of data and Voice over LTE (VoLTE) services.
By the end of 2021, Celcom claims to achieve 94.5% LTE population coverage nationwide, based on a signal measurement of -98dBm in urban and sub-urban areas, which provides an average of 3-4 bars of outdoor signal on a mobile device. In terms of LTE Advanced (LTE-A) coverage, the telco claims to have a population coverage of 90%.
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